Saturday, October 14, 2017

I Love Yarn Day 2017

In addition to being an avid reader and book blogger, I am also an avid knitter. In fact, I love combining my two favorite hobbies by listening to an audiobook while knitting!

Today is I Love Yarn Day 2017, so I thought it would fun to celebrate yarn by sharing some fun and unique book titles that pertain to knitting. See my list as follows:

1. Faux Taxidermy Knits by Louise Walker
2. Literary Knits: 30 Patterns Inspired by Favorite Books by Nikol Lohr
3. Woodland Knits: Over 20 Enchanting Patterns by Stephanie Dosen
4. Highland Knits: Knitwear Inspired by the Outlander Series by Interweave Editors
5. Knitting Wizardry by Amy Clarke Moore 
6. Vampire Knits: Projects to Keep You Knitting from Twilight to Dawn by Genevieve Miller
7. The Best Of Jane Austen Knits: 27 Regency-Inspired Designs by Amy Clarke Moore
8. Charmed Knits: Projects for Fans of Harry Potter by Alison Hansel
9. Once Upon a Knit: 28 Grimm and Glamorous Fairy-Tale Projects by Genevieve Miller
10. Knits for Nerds: 30 Projects: Science Fiction, Comic Books, Fantasy by Toni Carr

I do not own any of the above knitting books, but I look forward to purchasing a few of them and knitting a few of the patterns. 

Life Lessons From Russian Literature

I graduated with a BA in Russian and love Russian literature. So, I enjoyed reading an article found on the The Guardian's website titled, Happiness is a salty potato – and other life lessons from Russian literature by Viv Groskop.

Viv Groskop shares life lessons from ten different pieces of Russian literature. Ms. Groskop's article was entertaining reading for me and probably also a pleasant read for Russian literature lovers.

Friday, October 13, 2017

A Paris Hotel Is Offering A Room Service for Books!!

Next vacation stop, Paris!! As if visiting Paris for its major landmarks, food, and culture weren't enticement enough to make it a vacation destination... Now one can stay at a hotel in Paris that is a book lovers dream.

Check out the article I discovered on Bustle, titled This Paris Hotel Is Offering A Room Service for Books by Kristian Wilson. In the article, Kristian Wilson wrote the following:
Have you planned your next vacation yet? If you have the time and the money, you might consider spending the summer in France, because a room service for books is available in this Paris hotel. Sure to become the ultimate in book-nerd destinations, Le Pavillon des Lettres provides each guest with hand-picked reading material for the duration of their stay.
Located in Paris' eighth arrondissement, Le Pavillon des Lettres has 26 guest rooms, each of which is named for a famous writer or character. Lending their names to rooms are Hans Christian Andersen, Charles Baudelaire, Gustave Flaubert, Victor Hugo, William Shakespeare, Voltaire, Virginia Woolf, and Émile Zola. According to the announcement about the Paris hotel's room service for books, "each room at Pavillon des Lettres holds its writer integral to the design, with lines from poetry, prose and novels inscribed on the walls."
If you plan to stay at Les Pavillon des Lettres, be sure to book your room early. Smaller accommodations for one or two people are available for less than €200 per night, but vacationers snatch them up quickly. And with the press attention that the hotel's room service for books has garnered, you can expect any room at Les Pavillon des Lettres to soon be in high demand.

Les Pavillon des Lettres sounds like a fun hotel to stay at during a visit to Paris! 

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Another Reason to Feel Blessed About Being A Bookcrosser!! Lucky Me!!

Earlier this month, I wrote a post sharing the joys of Bookcrossing with my blog readers. 

Well, I have another reason to be grateful for being a member of Bookcrossing!

I keep a wishlist of books I want to read on Bookcrossing. This way I have a digital list of all the books I would like to read at my finger tips for when I am ready to acquire a copy of any book I wish to read.

Any member of Bookcrossing has access to my wishlist of books. If a Bookcrosser just so happens to have a copy of the book I'd like to read and feels like sharing it with me, then they can mail the copy of the book to me by requesting my mailing details.

It just so happens that I had News of the World by Paulette Jiles on my Bookcrossing reading wishlist. Earlier this week, I received the paperback edition of News of the World by Paulette Jiles in the mail from another Bookcrossing in Las Vegas. I was surprised to receive this novel as I had no idea it was coming my way.

I look forward to reading News of the World by Paulette Jiles.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Gone Fishing and Other Stories by Douglas Preston, Lincoln Child, & Others Authors

Unabridged Audiobook on CD
I listened to the unabridged audio version of Gone Fishing and Other Stories by Douglas Preston, Lincoln Child, Gregg Hurwitz, Heather Graham, Alex Kava, and David Dun.

There are five short stories in all to listen to in this collection and all of them are mysteries/thrillers. The short stories are as follows:

1. Gone Fishing by Douglas Preston & Licoln Child
2. Dirty Weather by Gregg Hurwitz
3. Face in the Window by Heather Graham
4. Spirit Walker by David Dun
5. Goodnight, Sweet Mother by Alex Kava

Each of the five stories are very well narrated by a different performer, which is wonderful as a good narrator can make or break a listening experience.

Overall, I really liked this collection of short stories. They are very entertaining especially if you enjoy mysteries/thrillers. All of the stories are good and give you a great introduction to each writer's style of writing and way of telling a story. 

My only minor complaint is that most of the stories were predictable in some way or another as I was able to guess what was going to happen before each story ended.

I am giving Gone Fishing and Other Stories a rating of 4 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

A Book Scout ~ A Literary Dream Job?

Aside from being a writer or an editor, what other careers in the publishing industry might be worth while? How about a career as a book scout? Learn more about being a book scout by reading an article I discovered on Bustle titled, What Is A Book Scout? Hanna Masaryk Takes You Behind-The-Scenes Of The Literary Dream Job by Kerri Jarema. In the article, Kerri Jarema writes the following:
"Literary scouts work on behalf of foreign publishers as consultants, helping them find books from the American market that they want to purchase translation rights to and publish in their markets," Masaryk tells Bustle. "Each scouting agency has a distinct, one on one relationship with their clients. We get to know not only the publishing trends in those countries, but our editors' tastes as well. We are their facilitators, their eyes and ears, and their public image here on the ground in New York."
And according to Masaryk, being the eyes and ears requires a lot: meetings with American agents, editors, and foreign rights managers to hear about the books they are working on and attempting to sell abroad; reading everything; and then writing to clients with detailed reports about why she thinks it would work for their list (or why it wouldn't). It's a particularly multi-level, fast paced subset of an industry that is already all go, go, go.
Click on the above link to read the entire article on what it takes to be a book scout!

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

The Weight by Andrew Vachss

Unabridged Audiobook on CD
I listened to the unabridged audio version of The Weight by Andrew Vachss and narrated by Buck Schirner.

Listening time for The Weight by Andrew Vachss is 9 hours, 11 minutes.

I've heard Buck Schirner narrate another novel and loved his voice and narration a lot. So, I was happy to find another novel that he narrates. A good narrator really makes a huge difference when listening to an audiobook.

I enjoy reading thrillers and The Weight by Andrew Vachss is a decent read. Sugar, is the leading character and he's a career criminal. Sugar isn't the brightest bulb in the pack, but he is well meaning and won't rat out his cohorts. Sugar essentially does time for a crime he doesn't commit. When Sugar is released from prison he discovers there are a few things that don't exactly add up... Let's just say that pay back is a bitch and Sugar is the one who sets things straight.

Andrew Vachss's writing is good in The Weight. Although, I did feel like this novel was a bit slow in parts.

Below is a plot summary for The Weight by Andrew Vachss from Audible:
Andrew Vachss returns with a mesmerizing novel about a hard-core thief who’s about to embark on a job that will alter his life forever.
Sugar is that rarest of commodities: an old-school professional thief, tough and loyal as a pit bull, packing 255 pounds of muscle. When he’s picked out of a photo array in a vicious rape case, the cops find his apartment empty. A stakeout catches Sugar when he returns... carrying a loaded pistol. The sex-crime cops get nothing from their interrogation, but a streetwise detective figures out why Sugar offers no alibi: at the time of the rape, a holiday-weekend break-in job was being pulled at a jewelry store. The DA offers Sugar two options: give up his partners in the jewelry heist and walk, or plead to the rape he didn’t commit — and he’ll toss in the gun charge. For Sugar, that’s not two options; he takes the weight.

When Sugar finishes his time, his money is waiting for him, held by Solly, the mastermind behind the jewelry heist. But Solly tells Sugar that one of the heist crew was actually sent by another planner - and that planner has just died. In Sugar’s world, all loose threads must be cut. He suspects that there’s more to this job than what Solly is telling him. But nothing he suspects or imagines can prepare him for what he finds.
I am giving The Weight by Andrew Vachss a rating of 3 stars out of 5 Stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

12 Ways You Could Be Getting More Out Of Your Public Library!

I love libraries as they are filled with plenty of ways to fulfill ones needs and acquire new knowledge!! 

I discovered an article on Bustle's website earlier today titled, 12 Ways You Could Be Getting More Out Of Your Local Library by Charlotte Ahlin. It's amazing all that public libraries have to offer us. So make the most of your public library and take advantage of all they have to offer!!

When was the last time you visited your local public library???

Monday, October 9, 2017

Annie and the Swiss Cheese Scarf by Alana Dakos

I read the deluxe edition of Annie and the Swiss Cheese Scarf by Alana Dakos and illustrated by Neesha Hudson, which is a children's book about learning to knit and includes the hardback edition of the book, stickers, a puzzle, and a paper doll set based on the book.

I enjoyed reading this cute picture book geared towards children ages 4 and older. The story is about a little girl named,  Annie, who watches her mother knit and decides she wants to learn how to knit just like her mommy. Like any little girl, Annie is impatient as she wants to knit as fast as her mother does and have her projects come out perfectly. Annie also makes lots of mistakes while learning to knit and ends up giving up on knitting altogether. 

It isn't until Annie is at school one day and learns that her teacher wants each student to share a 'special talent' they have with the rest of the class. It's then that Annie decides she will finish knitting her scarf and share her 'special talent' to knit with the rest of the class. Annie's scarf isn't perfect by any means and has lots of holes in it. This makes the scarf look like it is a piece of Swiss Cheese. But with flaws and all, Annie's Swiss Cheese scarf looks delightful and is a huge hit with her teacher and her classmates. By the end of the book, Annie ends up teaching other students how to knit during recess.

I liked how Annie and the Swiss Cheese Scarf by Alana Dakos shows perseverance, that things don't have to be perfect to turn out beautifully, and that learning new hobbies and skills takes practice before one can master them with ease and agility. These are all good messages to impart on young readers.

Annie and the Swiss Cheese Scarf by Alana Dakos is also beautifully illustrated by Neesha Hudson, which makes for a great read for young children.

If you are an avid reader and knitter and/or want to give a gift to a young reader and (hopefully) inspire them to want to learn to knit, then this book is a delightful read to share. It gives a lesson at the end of the book on how to knit, which makes for a great introduction to knitting.

There is also a FREE pattern online on how to make Annie's Swiss Cheese Scarf. So check out the pattern for the scarf by clicking on the link in the previous sentence!! Wouldn't it be fun to read the book to a child and then make the scarf together??

I am giving Annie and the Swiss Cheese Scarf by Alana Dakos a rating of 4 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Sunday, October 8, 2017

The Joys of Bookcrossing!!!

I've been a member of Bookcrossing for just over 10 years now and I love Bookcrossing!!

I've enjoyed interacting with other readers around the world, exchanging books and gifts with other readers, and participating in the forums, etc.

I've read so many books that I would have otherwise never read if I hadn't received recommendations from other Bookcrossers, participated in Bookrays and Bookrings (this is where readers on Bookcrossing send books to other readers to read and pass on to the next reader on the sign up list), or been given books as gifts by other generous Bookcrossers.

Case in point, I signed up to participate in a Bookray on Bookcrossing to read Devil-Devil by G. W. Kent, which is a mystery novel by a new to me author. I recently received Devil-Devil by G. W. Kent in the mail from a Bookcrosser in Brazil and will begin reading this novel soon. 

The REALLY COOL part for me is that this physical copy of Devil-Devil by G. W. Kent has traveled around the world LITERALLY as this novel has been read by Bookcrossers in several European countries, Australia, New Zealand, Brazil and has now reached me in the USA!! 

The other really cool thing is that Devil-Devil by G. W. Kent has also been read by 18 Bookcrossers before me and I can read each journal entry made by each reader online and discover what each person thought about the novel. How cool is that? Once I am done reading Devil-Devil by G. W. Kent, I will be mailing it to another reader here in the USA.

I'll be sure and let you know what I think of Devil-Devil by G. W. Kent once I've finished reading it. Until then, happy reading!!